Where do Newcastle fans go from here?

Posted by Marc Duffy

Chris Brunskill/Getty ImagesIt has been a difficult week for Newcastle supporters who saw their club sell their best player and then lose at home to rivals Sunderland.

As we all now know, the week in which Newcastle United once again sold their best player (something they've done frequently throughout my life watching them) ended with yet another derby defeat to Sunderland. Another 3-0 trouncing at home, and this one even more comprehensive than the last which was only nine months ago.

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Newcastle have broken all sorts of unwanted records in the past nine months of Alan Pardew's leadership. Their 6-0 home loss to Liverpool at the end of April was their heaviest home defeat in 87 years. Their 3-0 loss to Sunderland that same month was their biggest home defeat in a derby since 1966 -- a result that was matched again on Saturday meaning three consecutive derby defeats for the first time in 90 years. This is not good enough.

What do Newcastle's legions of supporters have to look forward to these days?

They can't become too attached to any individual players because they're always sold on. See Yohan Cabaye, Andy Carroll, or go back to Andy Cole, Peter Beardsley, Paul Gascoigne, Chris Waddle, Jonathan Woodgate and more. The club can never build and compete because their best players have always been for sale regardless of who has owned the club.

Newcastle are a football club synonymous with FA Cup success despite not having won the trophy since 1955. They've appeared in finals in more recent years, but under the current owner and manager this won't happen again -- they have publicly made that clear. So there is another thing the loyal supporters can forget about. It is outrageous that 35 different football clubs including Luton Town, Oxford United and Middlesbrough have won a domestic trophy since Newcastle last did. It is even more outrageous that the club now completely discard the cups in order to focus on finishing in the top half of the Premier League. This is clearly reflected in the one win the club have had in the FA Cup in the five ties they've played since Pardew took control.

The supporters used to be able to look forward to derbies but that too is now something to dread. Under Pardew, Newcastle have won one of the seven they've played. They've only managed to score five goals in those derbies but have conceded 11.

League ambitions? Top ten and a hell of a lot of money. That's it. This for a club who for years featured in the upper end of world football revenues and have one of the highest average attendances in Europe.

So I ask you, what do Newcastle fans have to look forward to? What is the point in going to St James' Park every other week with the way the club is being controlled? The best I can think of is the hope of the one or two games a year which Newcastle turn up to against the “big clubs”.

I've barely missed a home game in over 25 years but I'm growing tired of it. The lads I go to the game with feel the same way. Some of them are thinking about giving it up and trust me -- these men aren't Keegan-era bandwagon jumpers.

It stinks from top to bottom -- from the owners profiteering and deliberately provocative actions to the manager’s ridiculous tactics (long ball against two aerially dominant but immobile centre-halves! Really?!) and the inability to motivate a team full of internationals.

The atmosphere is toxic as shown by the three pitch invaders on Saturday and further highlighted by the bickering and infighting among fans in pubs, on social media and across the various supporters website forums.

Yes, the club sit eighth in the league and look set to fulfil the owners ambitions, but that is the classic example of "papering over the cracks".

Twitter: @MarcSDuffy


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